This week we looked at a few ways ICs can cultivate compassion both for themselves and their colleagues, one method for kick-starting collaborative partnerships and relationships with teachers, why mental health is so important—especially this fall—and more. Enjoy! 😌
Want to get the latest coaching news and insights delivered to your inbox every Wednesday? Subscribe to our Weekly Coaching Roundup emails!
"As instructional coaches, we have to remember that those we work with may have different values and beliefs from us. This doesn't make them wrong or right—or make us better or worse—but we must acknowledge that these different perspectives exist. . . . While I agree that skills like pausing, paraphrasing, and questioning are hugely important to coaches, I have also found another tool to help me stay focused and compassionate: I set an intention for my listening in each conversation I have."
"The most powerful way for a person to build self-efficacy is to master a task. Create a space where teachers feel safe to take risks, but make sure to set them up for success with the right support. Research suggests that planning responsive professional learning as an effective way to support mastery experiences. Providing multiple layers of support for learning new technology would be the best place to start. Be careful to avoid overload by breaking the learning into smaller chunks and providing coaching support for teachers who are technology novices."
Telling Your Story
Stephanie Affinito encourages coaches to use "6-word stories" to kick-start collaborative partnerships and relationships with teachers.
"It’s a simple, creative way to get to the essence of anything with big thinking, but short text. And there are so many possibilities for using it in our work with teachers. . . . After a professional learning session, ask teachers to reflect and write a 6-word takeaway that best captures their learning. They can orally share them or post on sticky notes as they leave the session."
"Fear of failure and feelings of guilt may intensify this fall. Increased training, their desire to improve, and the pressure to perform well may be sources of stress. . . . Times like these necessitate that teachers make care, connection, and community part of their daily routines, so they don’t lose themselves while helping others. For teachers who work with the most disenfranchised students, such as incarcerated youth, maintaining one’s sense of self is essential."
"Most of us could have never imagined having to teach through such challenging times. And while we may feel as if we barely have time to breathe, rethinking and prioritizing our workload will not only be good for our health, it will make us better educators, and impact our personal lives as well. Being intentional and reflective, figuring out what can be tossed or tweaked will help us to find the treasures in our practice that will restore our energy and love of teaching and learning."
Bonus: Infographic 🙌
Relationships between teachers and ICs have never been more pertinent as many continue to work from a distance. Amber Van Den Berg relays a handful of her go-to techniques to support both students and educators in remote learning environments.